FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
HOW MUCH DOES A PRIVATE PILOT LICENSE COST?
The FAA requires a minimum of 40 hours of flight time to qualify for your private pilot checkride, however, the national average is closer to 65 hours before someone is ready to take on the responsibilities of Pilot in Command. Cost of a PPL (Private Pilot License) depends on which aircraft you fly, how often you fly, your study habits, and your aptitude for flying in general. An average budget for your PPL is around $15,000 – $20,000.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET YOUR PILOT’S LICENSE?
The frequency of training will greatly affect how long it takes to get your Private Pilot License. The more often you train the more information you will retain and the less time it will take. We recommend 3 times per week as optimal frequency. Training consists of both flying and ground instruction.
DO I HAVE TO PAY ALL UP FRONT?
No. You may pay after each lesson or put a “block” payment on account which also gives you a discounted rate on all our aircraft. You may choose to pay for your entire license up front but we do not recommend it. We also have financing options available through our partners that might be avenue in order to start your training.
WHICH AIRPLANE SHOULD I LEARN TO FLY IN?
This is a personal choice. We use Cirrus, Cessna and Piper; they are all wonderful aircraft that many people learn to fly in. Neither is more difficult than the other but each aircraft type is different. We recommend learning to fly in whichever aircraft you will want to use when your training is complete.
CAN I RENT YOUR AIRCRAFT OVERNIGHT?
Approved renters may reserve any aircraft for any length of time they wish. A daily minimum may apply.
HOW LONG DOES A LESSON LAST?
A typical flight lesson is booked for a duration of 3 hours. While most of the flight is done within the 1-2 hour mark, there are certain pre and post-flight discussions and preparations that necessitate this block. Don’t worry, you’re only charged for actual time and not the blocked time.
HOW MANY LESSONS DO I HAVE TO TAKE BEFORE I SOLO?
It depends on you. There are no set amount of lessons. Your instructor will send you to solo once you are a safe and proficient pilot in the airspace and aircraft that you are flying in. Van Nuys is one of the busiest general aviation airports in the world, and therefore mastery will be a little tougher but well worth it.
You must also hold a valid medical and student pilot certificate before solo.
WHAT’S GROUND SCHOOL?
“Flight training is divided into two parts: ground school and flight training. Ground school teaches you the principles, procedures, and regulations you will put into practice in an aircraft, such as how to navigate from one airport to another. Before you can earn a pilot certificate, you must pass the FAA knowledge test on this information. You have several ground school options, including a scheduled classroom course from a flight school, weekend ground schools or a FAA-approved home-study course.” – AOPA
CAN I BRING A FRIEND ON MY FLIGHT LESSONS
At your instructor’s discretion we allow passengers to come along. Not every lesson is best, but your cross-country phase might be a perfect time to bring a friend along and let them experience the joy of flying.
WHAT DOES TRAINING LOOK LIKE?
Flight training, especially with Mach 1 is a fully tailored experience designed to effectively meet your goals. That’s a fancy way of saying we will tailor a program to fit your needs. Some of our clients prefer to independently learn the ground knowledge with minimal instructor interaction. Others prefer in-depth training and instruction with frequent instructor interactions. It all depends on whatever your preference might be.
Traditionally, we encourage most of our clients to meet with an instructor at least once per week for ground instruction and twice per week for flight instruction.
WHAT MATERIALS DO I NEED TO GET STARTED?
Great question! Fortunately, we have a link just for that! Click here to find out what materials we recommend to get your training started. We do recommend you meet with your flight instructor to discuss your specific needs and compile the final shopping list prior to any purchases.
WILL I ALWAYS WORK WITH THE SAME INSTRUCTOR?
No. You will always have a primary instructor, but we do our best to assign two instructors to each client so that there’s never a gap in training due to instructor availability. Our instructors communicate on every level in regards to client progression so the lessons will feel seamless.
And because we’re human, if for some reason you don’t vibe with your assigned instructor, we will always work to find the perfect match.
HOW FREQUENTLY SHOULD I SCHEDULE?
This depends entirely on the time frame you hope to accomplish your training within. We typically recommend, budget and time permitting, to schedule at a minimum twice per week. That facilitates a positive learning environment where you’re constantly building on top of each preceding lesson.
WHAT SHOULD I KNOW THAT I’M FORGETTING TO ASK?
Learning to fly is an incredible pursuit. It’s complicated, expensive, but immeasurably rewarding. You’ll be able to journey into the skies as easily as getting into your car. You’ll discover an entirely new level of mobility. That said, the journey to get there is filled with trials and tribulations. You won’t be alone through it and will be working with some of the best instructors in the business. But be prepared for frustrations as you push yourself to an entirely new level. Less than 0.2% of the US population has the ability to fly through 3 dimensions. You’re taking the first step to be part of that exclusive club.